An encouraging start for Singapore

22nd May, Hong Kong: Singapore enjoyed an encouraging start at the 11th Asian Schools Tenpin Bowling Championship underway at Hong Kong Bowling City Friday when Paul Yap HenZhong clinched the Boy's Singles bronze medal.

Japan's Daisuke Yoshida set a blistering pace with a 259 opening game to lead Korea's Choi Tae Seung by 1 pin while Tan Chng Kiat tied in seventh position with a respectable 244 and Alexander Tan Kee Hock ninth with 242.As the 14-year-old Tony Wong of Hong Kong surged into the front, Singapore's Paul Yap HenZhong fired 278 to trail Wong by 7 pins in second. Another two good games of 216 and 279 saw the Singaporean take over the running, 15 pins ahead of Filipino, Jomar Jumapao.

But disaster struck in the fifth game when Yap encountered three splits ending the crucial game with 179 but fortunately, the youngster recovered to knock down 231 to clinch the bronze medal with 1403.

"This is my first Asian Schools championship and I'm happy with my performance," said the 17-year-old J1 student of Raffles Junior College, Paul Yap. "The pair of lanes where I shot 179 were completely different from the other earlier lanes and I struggled to find the line.

"Luckily, I finished on a more favourable pair," added Yap, who was selected into this year's Schools team after a good performance in last year's National Schools Championship in which he won two silver medals in the Singles and Team events.

Filipino Jomar Jumapao claimed the gold medal with a superb 1466 ahead Japan's Takahito Fukuda, who settled for the silver medal with 1409. Singapore's Ng Chiew Pang tied 17th position with 1271 while Alexander Tan managed 22nd position.

Other Singaporeans, Tan Chng Kiat (26th-1251), Jin Lau (tied 31st-1230), Shawn Loh Chee Choong (35th-1219), Anthony Wee (38th-1210) and Keith Saw (48th-1147).

Meanwhile, debutant Celine Mok Wen Jun was Singapore's best finisher taking up sixth position with 1287 and averaging 214.5 as Asian Intercity Team gold medalist, Genevieve Gan Hu Ling finished tenth with 1247.Misaki Mukotani of Japan snatched the Girl's Singles gold medal with 1413, just 2 pins from pace-setter, Kim Ji Yeon of Korea, who settled for the silver with 1411. Another Korean, Sim Ui Jin took the bronze medal with 1317.

Other six Singapore girls were Edlyn Kwok You Jing (tied 23rd-1165), Michelle Ng (25th-1163), Grace Tan Liwei (32nd-1110), Joelie Fung Yu Hui (34th-1081), Rachel Ang Xue Ying (38th-1064) and Grace Fung Yu Si (40th-1053).

The boys will resume competition with the Doubles in the morning squad while the girls will contest their Doubles in the afternoon. The Team of Four will be held on Sunday, 24th May over two blocks of 3 games on the same day.

Detailed scores: Boy's Singles | Girl's Singles.

Photos by Terence Yaw for SBF.